Little has been said about next month's change in policy that will allow Mexican trucks to roll across the border into the U.S. making deliveries anywhere in the country. U.S. truckers will now lose business to low-paid Mexican truckers who can drive trucks that don't have to meet the same emissions and safety requirements demanded of U.S. trucks, will not be required to submit drug tests in the U.S. as required of all other drivers, and can drive as many hours as they want without a break.
Having taken a number of trips well into Mexico and observed trucks held together with baling wire belching clouds of smoke swerving all over the road, it’s hard to understand why environmentalists and safety advocates aren’t out organizing protest marches. Despite administration officials’ assertions that some of these concerns will be managed in Mexico, I’m sorry, but that comforts me like a bed of nails.
And what about security? The National Transportation Safety Board, INS and Border Patrol already admit to being grossly understaffed now. How will they possibly control the increased traffic that will include drug and criminal smuggling along with imported tomatoes and lettuce.
From a purely highway safety perspective, this seems like a terrible idea. But in a post 9/11 world, it's unfathomable.
Not surprisingly, U.S. truckers, and Teamsters are up in arms. If only border security advocates knew...